February 13, 2003

Test Spin: Hot Action Cop

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The boys of Hot Action Cop are loud and proud to be hedonists. On their self-titled debut, sex is basically the only thing running around in their heads. The bouncing first single, “Fever For The Flava,” is an outlandish, raunchy plea for the nookie (“She got the power of the hootchie/ I got the fever for the flava of the cootchie”). Though their lyrics may be single-minded, their music is deftly eclectic. The Nashville foursome energetically blends together a laundry list of genres: punk, funk, grunge, hip-hop, reggae, soul, and even acid-rock, just to name a few.

Lead singer Rob Werthner raps and growls interchangeably throughout the array of styles. He even croons falsetto later in the album when the band settles down with a handful of songs that are more about love than lust, such as the tender, “Why Judy” and the romantic, “In A Little While.”

The band certainly has the talent to pull off all this genre-bending, yet their debut leaves plenty of room for artistic growth. It’s difficult to pin Hot Action Cop down since they don’t have a clear-cut musical identity and their songwriting combines tasteless, sophomoric lyrics with moments of honest emotion. However, these contradictions only add to their amusing appeal. Besides the point, the album cover gets my very early nomination for best of 2003. How can you not love the tongue-in-cheek design?

Archived article by Brett Rosenthal